Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access Points vs. Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access Points
Score 9.3 out of 10
N/A
Aruba Networks offers wireless LAN (WLAN) solutions via its variety of wireless access points.N/A
Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Score 9.4 out of 10
N/A
The Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points includes the 9115 and 9117, and designed to meet high demand network access.N/A
Pricing
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Considered Both Products
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access Points

No answer on this topic

Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Chose Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
They are equal and Aruba seems to have an easier out the box setup. Adding APs is much simpler on Aruba.
Chose Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Of all the different APs that I have implemented the Cisco APs are still the most feature rich. The analytics that they provide sets them apart from all other vendors I have tested.
Chose Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
They are Similar in functionality and price, but free of charge vWLC is a killer feature.
Chose Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
The Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points meet or exceed the competition in every category.
Top Pros

No answers on this topic

Top Cons

No answers on this topic

Best Alternatives
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Small Businesses
Ubiquiti WLAN
Ubiquiti WLAN
Score 9.3 out of 10
Ubiquiti WLAN
Ubiquiti WLAN
Score 9.3 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Enterprises
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Likelihood to Recommend
9.8
(14 ratings)
9.3
(52 ratings)
Usability
9.0
(1 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Performance
-
(0 ratings)
9.5
(45 ratings)
Support Rating
8.2
(4 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Product Scalability
-
(0 ratings)
8.5
(45 ratings)
Vendor post-sale
-
(0 ratings)
7.3
(1 ratings)
Vendor pre-sale
-
(0 ratings)
8.2
(1 ratings)
User Testimonials
Aruba Instant Wi-Fi Access PointsCisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points
Likelihood to Recommend
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
It is possible that we have a bad luck with the deployment. However, It is capable to perform enterprise-level security to fit some of the organization's standards. With Airwave and other tools, it's easy to manage and administrate your wireless environment. Make aware of the IPsec tunnel from each user to the controller if you are using Clearpass for NAC. If you have a remote office with local resources, you will need controller or IAP to route traffic locally. If you have many remote offices, you will need to deploy controllers or IAP in each office, which lead to additional cost and management.
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Cisco
Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points are well suited for most applications as they scale very well and can be configured to work in a lot of different scenarios. However they are quite costly so they may not be suited for all business purposes. But they do perform and deliver and rarely cause issues.
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Pros
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
  • They offer both a controller-based and controller-less option. This allows customers of all sizes to deploy a wireless network without the upfront cost of controller hardware. A controller can be added later.
  • Aruba also offers Airwave which is a single management point for all AP swarms in the environment. It offers many reporting features as well as visual RF maps displaying heatmaps of the AP signals and client positioning.
  • The Aruba Access Point we have (224s and 225s) also offer both PoE and external power supplies for those smaller deployments that may not have PoE capable switches.
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Cisco
  • It is a versatile, clean, balanced and secure access point.
  • Wifi 5 802.11ac wave 2 technology.
  • Client link and cleanair are functions to mitigate and improve user connection.
  • Reliable smartnet service for warranty and technical support.
  • Perfect for offices and indoor locations.
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Cons
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
  • We have had a bunch of these stop working after a power outages. We are guessing a surge or something caused them to stop working.
  • Some of the documentation is outdated. It seems they like to make changes to how things work and it usually mean less access and insight into the devices you manage.
  • The auto signal strength feature could use a little work. It seems like even when we turn it down all the way it tries ot increases the signal strength.
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Cisco
  • Firmware distribution between access points
  • Replace web auth certificate without reloading WLC controllers
  • The issue with expired MIC certificate - but this is not an issue with 9100
  • New AP with new hardware revision works only with the new WLC firmware
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Usability
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Aruba Networks Wireless LAN is very intuitive to use. After the initial learning curve for the Aruba OS platform, it is straightforward. Day-to-day tasks, such as deploying an access point with a configuration, are very straightforward. Standard incremental system upgrades are also very intuitive. If you have any past experience with Aruba network switching or Cisco switching, the command structure is relatively similar.
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Cisco
The Cisco Catalyst 9120 Access Points have been a solid deployment for me. Using their interface is a mix of new and old. They run IOS, so if you know the CLI, you can easily navigate around them. You can join them to an older controller if it supports a certain version, you can join it to a new 9800 controller--very straight forward--and you can run the embedded wireless controller on them directly. I've found this to be very useful at smaller sites. The Cisco Catalyst 9120 Access Points are not limited to feature sets like the older generations' mobility express platform.
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Performance
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
No answers on this topic
Cisco
Cisco is providing the best in class access points. We would be focusing Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points to have the common platform. We are waiting for cloud implementation on DNA or cloud monitoring of 9800cl in Meraki dashboard. It's reliable, tagging gives a lot of flexibility. Virtualization finally works as expected.
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Support Rating
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
It is a reliable and complete solution for providing wireless network to users. I had no technical problems during those years. The Aruba controller and access points have always worked very well and we have greatly improved the relationship with customers and we now have absolute control over the wireless network traffic. It has quality assurance and support with efficient service as well.
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Cisco
Cisco has been very good at correcting early issues with their code. Their TAC support has been fantastic when I would open a case with issues I was facing. Even though the hardware was new, they were very familiar with the interfaces and issues I was having. In the past I've been concerned about adopting a new product right away because of support issues. That was not the case here. Once I had the deployment up and running, they have had a good run of reliability.
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Alternatives Considered
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Cisco Aironet did not even compare to Aruba, Aruba was so far advanced from Cisco back when we used them. Aruba solved several business problems all in one ecosystem, all Cisco did was acted as somewhat intelligent Access Points. Aruba enabled us to leverage VoIP, use APs as VPN endpoints/devices, manage individual devices as assets, etc.
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Cisco
In testing, Cisco Catalyst 9100 Access Points outperformed all other APs in our testing. Performance was second to none in the testing lineup. Reliability has been proven over the many years we have used this product. The new 9100s have also not presented any hardware reliability issues for us so far. Some of the other vendors offer some nice to have features such as Bluetooth device diagnostics and very deep AI assurance.
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Scalability
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
No answers on this topic
Cisco
These access points offer flexibility in deployment scenarios, supporting both standalone and controller-based architectures. Organisations can choose the model that best suits their current needs and scale as their requirements grow. Cisco Aironet Access Points are compatible with Cisco's Wireless LAN controllers, allowing for centralized management and monitoring of a large number of access points across the network. With the recent changes, it will even support cloud base controllers.
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Return on Investment
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
  • Excellent uptime and reliability
  • If licensed properly, failover is easy
  • The newest version upgrade is somewhat cumbersome as they want us to replace hardware, which seems silly, so we are on the most current legacy supported version. Once unsupported, we will need to replace hardware.
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Cisco
  • With a wide range of Wi-Fi and security options, as well as the ability to expand and scale easily, it’s an excellent solution.
  • It achieved a significant rise in the number of concurrent wireless network users with a low-cost solution that provided outstanding performance.
  • We invested in wireless networks in the long run, and as a result, we could connect more users without compromising performance.
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